Welcome to California Athletics
The University of California associates success in its athletics program with the welfare of its student-athletes. A truly effective athletics program produces student-athletes who succeed in their academic work, as well as in their chosen sport, and whose careers after graduation are a tribute to both them and their University. The social aspects of athletics, which include the opportunity to exercise leadership, to develop the ability to work with others as a team, to accept and appreciate the discipline of sustained practice and training, and to realize the value of good sportsmanship, are as important as the physical aspects.
The student-athlete concept is the guiding principle of California's participation in NCAA Division I athletics. The University's goal is for student-athletes to receive a quality experience both in the classroom and on the playing field.
To ensure that each student-athlete reaches this goal, the University must have a pro-active system that enables it to monitor all practices. This system must provide all the assurances necessary to anticipate and prevent any breach of the rules.
Strict observance of rules and regulations contribute to the success of our athletic program. It is the responsibility of the University administration and the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics to adhere to all regulations created for the governance of intercollegiate athletics as set forth by the Pac-10 Conference, NCAA and University of California.
Any questions can be directed to the University of California Athletic Department, Office of Compliance Services at (510) 642-0580.
Representatives of Athletics Interests
Under NCAA rules a "representative of the institution's athletics interests (athletics representative/booster) is any individual who:
1. Made any type of contribution to the University or Athletic Department;
2. Joined a Cal booster club or any sport specific support group;
3. Provided benefits (e.g., summer jobs) to prospective or enrolled student-athletes or their families;
4. Assisted, in any manner, in the recruitment of prospective student-athletes;
5. Participated as a varsity athlete at the University of California;
6. Is the parent or legal guardian of an enrolled student-athlete;
7. Promoted the athletics program in any way.
Once an individual is identified as a "Representative of the Institution's Athletics Interest," the person retains that identity forever.
NCAA rules hold the institution responsible for all actions of its athletics representatives. Boosters involved in NCAA violations may lose benefits and privileges associated with the athletic program (e.g., ticket privileges or priority seating).
As a Representative of Athletics Interests, you are permitted to:
1. Notify coaches about prospects in your area that may be strong additions to the Cal team;
2. Attend high school or two-year college athletic contests or events where prospects may compete, but you may not contact the prospect or their relatives or guardians;
3. Continue existing friendships with families of prospects, but you may not attempt to recruit the prospect.
4. Engage in permissible pre-enrollment activities with a prospect, such as summer employment, provided the prospect has already signed a National Letter of Intent and the institution is aware and informed these contacts are made.
5. Have a phone conversation with a prospect only if the prospect initiates the call. Such a call may not be pre-arranged by any institutional staff member or another representative of athletics interests. All questions regarding the athletic department must be referred to the proper Athletic Department staff member.
What You Must Know
A prospective student athlete (prospect) is … any student who has started classes for the ninth grade. The NCAA, however, does not have a minimum age limit. As a result, a student of any age who is contacted for recruitment purposes becomes a prospect.
A recruiting contact is ... any face-to-face encounter between a prospect or a prospect's parent or legal guardian, and a university staff member or Representative of Athletics Interests during which any dialogue occurs in excess of an exchange of greetings.
Rules to Remember
1. Only coaches and university staff members can be involved in the recruiting process. All boosters, alumni, friends and other Representatives of Athletics Interests, who are not employed by the University, are prohibited from making contact (in person, by phone, by fax, or by letter) with a prospective student-athlete, or his or her family, for the purpose of encouraging participation in the Cal athletics program. An alum may be called by a prospect to discuss the University generally, but not to talk about University of California Athletics.
2. An impermissible contact, even if unintentional, could subject the University of California to penalties imposed by the NCAA. Prospects could lose eligibility for competition at Cal because of a recruiting violation.
As a representative of California's athletics interests, you may not provide a prospect with improper recruiting inducements, including but not limited to:
1. Contact a prospect's coach, principal or counselor in an effort to evaluate a prospect;
2. Visit a prospect's educational institution to pick up film or transcripts pertaining to the evaluation of a prospect's academic eligibility or athletic ability;
3. Contact a prospect, his/her relatives or legal guardians on or off the Cal campus or by telephone;
4. Write a prospect, his/her relatives or legal guardians; or make special arrangements for entertaining a prospect on an official visit (e.g., by providing donations, good, services, or discounts).
What You Must Know
An enrolled student-athlete is ... a student who is presently participating in athletics or has completed his/her eligibility and is still enrolled at the institution.
An extra benefit is ... any special gift or arrangement provided to an enrolled student-athlete or a student athlete's relative or friend which is not available to the general student body of that institution. Extra benefit legislation also may apply to gifts or arrangements (other than legitimate jobs) following the student-athlete's graduation.
Rules to Remember
1. Representatives of Athletics Interests cannot provide an "extra benefit" or special arrangements to an enrolled student-athlete that is not available to all other students at the University.
2. If a student-athlete accepts any benefit based on his/her athletic ability, that athlete will lose all eligibility for intercollegiate athletic participation. If the student-athlete has completed eligibility, the institution is still responsible and may receive penalties applied to the sport program. Additionally, the booster or representative involved may be told to disassociate from the University's athletics program.
As a representative of the University of California's athletic interests, you may not:
1. Provide a student-athlete with extra benefits or services including, but not limited to:
- --a loan of money
- --a guarantee of bond
- --the use of an automobile
- --signing or co-signing a note with an outside agency to arrange a loan;
2. Make services available to a student-athlete (e.g., movie tickets, dinners, use of a car) from commercial agencies (e.g., movie theaters, restaurants, car dealers) without charge or at reduced rates;
3. Provide a student-athlete with a special discount, payment arrangement or credit on a purchase or service;
4. Provide a student-athlete with professional services without charge or at a reduced cost;
5. Allow a student-athlete to use a telephone or credit card without charge or at a reduced cost; or
6. Serve as a "sponsor" or "family" for enrolled student-athletes.
The University is permitted to arrange employment for prospective student-athletes during the summer prior to their enrollment as freshmen (provided they have signed a National Letter of Intent) and enrolled student-athletes.
The Compliance Services Office must keep written records verifying employment of all student-athletes. The following rules are applicable to student- athlete employment:
1. A student-athlete's compensation may not include any payment for value or utility that the student-athlete may have for the employer because of the publicity, reputation, fame or personal following that he or she has obtained because of athletics;
2. The student-athlete is compensated only for work actually performed;
3. the student-athlete is compensated at a rate commensurate with the going rate in that locality for similar services.
A student-athlete can receive money from you or your family for teaching or giving lessons in their sport. To do this the following conditions must be met:
1. Institutional facilities cannot be used;
2. To simply "play" against the student-athlete is not permitted (e.g., playing lessons);
3. Documentation of the lessons must be on file with the Compliance Services Office;
4. Compensation for the lessons must be paid by the lesson recipient or family and not anyone else.
An individual shall not be eligible for participation in intercollegiate athletics if the individual accepts any payment for or permits the use of his/her name or picture to advertise, recommend or promote directly the sale or use of a commercial product or service of any kind.
If a student-athletes name or picture appears on commercial items (e.g., T-shirts, playing cards, posters etc.) or is used to promote a commercial product without the student-athletes knowledge or permission, the student-athlete and the institution are required to take steps to stop such an activity in order to retain the student-athlete's eligibility.
All charitable, educational and non-profit promotional activities involving student-athletes must have prior approval from the University.
If you use a student-athlete's name or picture prior to checking with the Compliance Services Office, you risk the student-athlete's eligibility. He or she will be prevented from competing based upon your action.
In light of recent national issues regarding sports agents and student-athletes, the University of California has created a set of guidelines for its student-athletes to follow. It is the university's intention to protect the welfare of its student-athletes, their family and the athletics program from severe consequences that can be experienced as a result of violation of University policy and NCAA regulations.
It is not permissible for student-athletes to make a written or verbal agreement with an agent prior to the exhaustion of their eligibility. Further, student-athletes may not receive benefits including meals, clothing or transportation from an agent or a representative of an agent.
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Collegiate sports gambling is a national problem. The University of California is very sensitive on issues concerning gambling.
NCAA rules prohibit student-athletes or intercollegiate athletics staff members from placing bets (through organized means) on any sporting event, amateur or professional, in which the NCAA sponsors a championship. It is a violation of Federal Law to affect, or attempt to affect, the outcome of a collegiate contest. Additionally, it is not legal for anyone (student-athlete, coach, staff or booster) to provide information that can be used to bet on the outcome of a contest.
Alumni, Friends and Supporters
After reading this compliance overview, it may seem that Cal boosters and alumni are prevented from any involvement with prospective and enrolled student-athletes.
Here are some activities that are OK.
For the prospective student-athlete, a booster may:
1. Contact a prospect for the purposes of arranging summer employment after he or she has signed a National Letter of Intent;
2. Provide the sport specific coach with names or newspaper clippings of talented prospective student-athletes in your area.
For an enrolled student-athlete, a booster may:
1. Invite a student-athlete(s) or an entire team to your home for a meal. The meal, which may be catered, should be limited to infrequent or special functions. (Holidays, Birthdays etc.) Boosters are permitted to give a student-athlete(s) transportation to their homes on these occasions (local transportation only).
2. Invite an entire Cal team for dinner when the team is visiting your area for an away athletics contest. This meal may take place at a booster's home or at a restaurant. (Student-athletes are allowed certain benefits as a team that they are not permitted as individuals).